Charles A. Dice Center Working Paper No. 2008-21
63 Pages Posted: 18 Nov 2008 Last revised: 23 Jul 2012
Date Written: April 10, 2009
This paper is a survey of the literature on boards of directors, with an emphasis on research done subsequent to the Hermalin and Weisbach (2003) survey. The two questions most asked about boards are what determines their makeup and what determines their actions? These questions are fundamentally intertwined, which complicates the study of boards because makeup and actions are jointly endogenous. A focus of this survey is how the literature, theoretical as well as empirically, deals - or on occasions fails to deal - with this complication. We suggest that many studies of boards can best be interpreted as joint statements about both the director-selection process and the effect of board composition on board actions and firm performance.
Keywords: endogenous governance, board of director selection and actions
JEL Classification: G34, L20
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
Adams, Renee B. and Hermalin, Benjamin E. and Weisbach, Michael S., The Role of Boards of Directors in Corporate Governance: A Conceptual Framework & Survey (April 10, 2009). Charles A. Dice Center Working Paper No. 2008-21; ECGI - Finance Working Paper No. 228/2009; Fisher College of Business Working Paper No. 2008-03-020. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1299212 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1299212